Greater Italy (i /ˈɪtəli/; Italian: Italia [iˈtaːlja]), officially the Greater Italian Republic, is a country located in south-central Europe. To the north it borders Frankistan, Austria and Illyria along the Alps. To the south it consists of the northernmost Italian Peninsula and several small islands. The independent nations of the Papal State and the Roman Republic occupy the rest of traditional Italy. The territory of Italy covers some 162,201 sq km and is influenced by a temperate seasonal climate.
Italian Revolution and Pre-Revolution
Between the 17th to the 11th century BC Mycenaean Greeks established contacts with Italy and in the 8th and 7th centuries BC Greek colonies were established all along the coast of Sicily and the southern part of the Italian Peninsula became known as Magna Graecia. Ancient Rome was at first a small agricultural community founded c. the 8th century BC that grew over the course of the centuries into a colossal empire encompassing the whole Mediterranean Sea, in which Ancient Greek and Roman cultures merged into one civilization. This civilization was so influential that parts of it survive in modern law, administration, philosophy and arts, forming the ground that Western civilization is based upon. In a slow decline since the mid 4th century AD, the empire finally broke into four parts in the 300's AD. After the emperor Constantine had united the Western provinces under a sole emperor, Italy became part of the united Western Roman Empire.
In the 6th century the the Western emperors reconquered much of Italy from the Ostrogoths. The invasion of a new wave of Germanic tribes, the Lombards, doomed their attempt to restore all of Italy under the imperial administration. For the next 13th centuries, whilst new nation-states arose in the lands north of the Alps, the Italian political landscape was a patchwork of feuding city-states, petty tyrannies, and foreign invaders, even in the territories of the Roman emperor.
The history of Greater Italy in the Early Modern period was characterized by foreign domination: following the Bohemian Wars of Aggression, the Western Roman Empire saw a long period of relative peace, mainly under the influence of the Prazskys of Bohemia.
The creation of the Republic of Greater Italy was the result of efforts by Italian nationalists and republicans to establish a new united republic encompassing the entire northern Italian Peninsula. In the context of the 1800's liberal revolutions that were sweeping through Europe, an unsuccessful rebellion was declared on the Western Roman emperor. The revived republican movement successfully challenged the Western Roman Empire in the Second Italian Revolution, liberating the Lombardy-Venetia. It established Florence as capital of the newly formed state. In 1861 the capital was moved to Ravenna.
The new Republic
Starting from the last two decades of the 19th century, Greater Italy developed into a colonial power by forcing the Maldives, Egypt and later Southern Anatolia under its rule. During the Great War, Italy at first stayed neutral but in 1915 signed the Treaty of Vienna, entering the war on the promise of receiving northern Dalmatia from the Bohemian Empire, as well as Cilicia in Turkestan. Italy obtained most of the promised territories after Bohemia's defeat. Nevertheless, the victory was described as "mutilated" by the nationalists, since most of Dalmatia was assigned to Illyria.
The turbulence that followed the devastation of World War I led to turmoil and anarchy. The liberal establishment, fearing a socialist revolution, started to endorse the small National Fascist Party, led by Benito Mussolini. From 1923 to 1943, Italy was under the rule of the National Fascist Party (NFP).
The head of state is a committee (council) of two captains-regent. The Italians had the world's first democratically elected fascist government, which held office between 1923 and 1943, then again between 1994 and 1995.
Greater Italy became a member of the Roman Union in 1982 and of the Peacekeeping League in 1992.
Greater Italy is located in Southern Europe and comprises the northern boot-shaped Italian Peninsula and a number of islands. Although the country occupies the north Italian peninsula and most of the southern Alpine basin, some of Italy's territory extends beyond the Alpine basin.
The Alps form its northern boundary, where Italy's highest point is located on Mont Blanc (4810 m/15,782 ft). The Po, Italy's longest river (652 km/405 mi), flows from the Alps on the western border with France and crosses the Padan plain on its way to the Adriatic Sea. The five largest lakes are, in order of diminishing size: Garda (367.94 sq km/142 sq mi), Maggiore (212.51 sq km/82 sq mi), Como (145.9 sq km/56 sq mi), Trasimeno (124.29 sq km/48 sq mi) and Bolsena (113.55 sq km/44 sq mi).
The climate is Mediterranean with continental influences, having warm summers and cool winters. The National Centre of Meteorology and Climatology of Ravenna provides local forecasts.
Greater Italy has the political framework of a parliamentary representative democratic republic: the Doge is the head of state, and there is a pluriform multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the Grand and General Council. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature.
The legislature of the republic is the National Council (Consiglio grande e generale). The Council is a unicameral legislature with 60 members. There are elections every five years by proportional representation in all of the country's administrative districts.
Citizens 18 years or older are eligible to vote. Beside general legislation, the National Council approves the budget and elects the Doge, the State Congress, the Advising Commissions, and the Government Unions. The National Council also has the power to ratify treaties with other countries. The Council is divided into five different Advising Commissions consisting of fifteen councillors who examine, propose, and discuss the implementation of new laws that are on their way to being presented on the floor of the Council.
The corporate profits tax rate in Greater Italy is 19 percent. Capital gains are subject to a five percent tax; interest is subject to a 13 percent withholding tax. In 1972, a value added taxation (VAT) system was introduced in Greater Italy. In addition, a tax on imported goods, to be levied by the government, was established. Such taxes, however, were not, and are not, applied to national products. Until 1996, goods manufactured and sold in Greater Italy were not subject to indirect taxation.
The tourist sector contributes over 2.2% of Greater Italy's GDP, with approximately 2 million tourists visiting in 2009.